Where large groups of people come together to play games or do anything really there are always a few unsavoury characters who spread a negative environment that really ruins it for the rest of us. In today’s age, especially with the abundance of popular multiplayer/cooperative games, toxicity is rampant more than ever. I am willing to bet that more than a few of you have encountered some form of aggression or toxicity online, I know I have. Well, Rare through Sea of Thieves is making the experience more friendly to players who may be unfamiliar with the game or just want to have a good time. There is no skill or experience required, just good times and a chill crew.
Through Sea of Thieves latest Innside Story as well as reveals at NYCC, we now know that there are confirmed smaller ships for players who do not want to group up with others on a bigger ship, or who just feel like roaming the seas solo. This is quite an inclusive option for players and adds some variety to the gameplay and welcomes all lovers of pirates and pirate games into the fun of Sea of Thieves. It was even suggested through the Innside Story that teams of smaller ships could group up and end up taking down a larger one with a bigger crew.
But it is a pirate game, right? Where treasure and power rule the ocean and no one is safe. Initially friendly fire as an active part of the ‘fun’ which for the most part was just some good old-fashioned mucking around. However, it could easily turn toxic and troublesome with crew members ganging up on each other to put them down and ruin their experience. Friendly fire is not going to be a part of Sea of Thieves going forward, which places a greater emphasis on crew relationships and crew bonding. Yes, it is a pirate game and pirates are a notoriously backstabby sort but with the huge cooperative focus of Sea of Thieves, the crew bond is incredibly important. There are plenty of other pirates on the seas, go stab them instead and be nice to each other.
On that vein, troublesome players can be voted into a literal brig, or ship prison for those not yet accustomed to the piratey lingo. I suggest watching Pirates of the Caribbean for further clarification. If a player/crewmate is being particularly troublesome you can vote to place him in the brig, where majority rules. We may be pirates but there is democracy at sea. He or she can be voted out if they promise to be on their best behaviour or they can die in there. Either way Sea of Thieves will become a better place. In the words of my mother, it is, “punishing them for being an asshole”.
But this is a masterstroke from Rare and one that not only incorporates more pirate facilities into the game but also discourages detrimental behaviour. I absolutely love this stance to toxic player behaviour and it will not only build crew bonds with those who are actually beneficial to the crew but will also build a friendly environment, where we all come together for our love of pirates and an amazing game, not for the chance to ruin the good times of others.
Furthermore, in a game that requires a lot of communication between crew members, it could be difficult to communicate with each other, especially if you are strangers who just happened to jump in together. An in-game text-based communication system is a perfect solution to those who have trouble communicating, do not own a headset or even who just do not want to talk. A series of commands that can be selected at any time means you do not have to be constantly talking to be helpful to your crew.
This feature brings people into an easy harmony, assuming they use it, and combined with other elements coming in Sea of Thieves will generate a positive environment on the high seas, one that will be inclusive to all who wish to experience a pirate’s life.